The Pajama Factory: A place to make things

The Pajama Factory: A place to make things

The eight-building complex covers two blocks in the largest city of the Pennsylvania Wilds and boasts 300,000 square feet of floor area.

Owner Mark Winkelman, a retired architect, bought the historic building in back in 2007 with a goal to develop it into “a place to make things.”

That is underway – and is evident throughout the buildings.

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Large Grant Will Bring Something New to Williamsport

New construction

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. — What was once the largest pajama factory in the world, may soon be getting a makeover. The complex on Park Avenue in Williamsport expects to add shops, restaurants, and apartments. Thanks to a $2 million grant funded by state taxpayer dollars.

The plans for the Pajama Factory call for a new parking lot, a rooftop garden and bar, and 65 apartments.

“This is a very unique place, the Pajama Factory. It’s got an artistic element, there is retail here. There is nothing else quite like it, nothing else at all like it in Williamsport,” Williamsport City Council President Randy Allison said.

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Williamsport Beyond Baseball: The Pajama Factory

The Pajama Factory started out in the 1880s, as a rubber company. Later on, hundreds worked here making Keds sneakers.  In the 1930s, the Weldons PajamaCompany moved in. The eight-building complex would grow to become the largest pajama factory in the world.

A set is on display inside Todd Foresman’s Coffee shop on the ground floor, where he takes pride in his work.

“When you are cooking for people that you care about, you make a better meal.  It’s the same with the coffee.  I really love what I do.  I really do believe I have the best coffee in the state,” said Todd Foresman, Owner, Way Cool Beans Coffee Shop

Todd’s landlord is property owner Mark Winkelman, an architect from New York.  He’s renovating the Pajama Factory and turned part of the building into his home away from home.

“We’ve owned it for twelve years.  It’s been a continuous renovation effort.  And we will continue for many more years.  I like the slow growth, the organic growth aspect of that,” said Mark Winkelman, Owner of the Pajama Factory.

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Pajama Factory’s annual Green-o-ree Spring Festival set for April 20

The Pajama Factory’s annual Spring Festival is back and bigger and better than ever. The Green-o-Ree Spring Festival is located at 1307 Park Ave., Williamsport, and will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 20, 2019. Free admission and family friendly.

At the Pajama Factory, sustainability is a core value, and we wanted an event to celebrate just that. With more local, eco-friendly vendors, an egg hunt for the kids, and upcycled art demonstrations, this event is sure to be fun for the whole family.

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Drag Bingo Benefit for AIDS Resource on February 8

Williamsport – AIDS Resource, Inc., a community-based organization with offices in Williamsport and State College, announces a Drag Bingo Benefit at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, February 8, 2019 at the Pajama Factory Community Room, 1307 Park Avenue, Williamsport.

Advance tickets by credit card are $20 for 10 games by calling 570-322-8448 ext. 0 or $22 at the door.  The evening will feature prizes, 50/50 raffle, light snacks and BYOB.  Laurel Charleston, a State College based entertainer, will perform for the event.  All proceeds benefit the valuable programs of AIDS Resource.

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A View from the Easel

“My space is one of many artist/creator spaces that have been built inside a large old factory in Williamsport, PA (the factory that made Keds sneakers back in the day). My studio is the best space I’ve ever had to work in — 400 square feet, 14-foot ceilings, large windows, open, safe, free wireless, track lighting, relatively quiet.

Like many artists, I have at least a couple pieces developing at one time, which the open layout allows me to do. Even though I tend so spend most of my time on one piece at a time until it’s finished, I do move to another block to cut, or back to my easel for a drawing or painting I’m working on, or a preliminary drawing for the next large piece. I have an adjacent storage space as well, so if I need to get pieces out the of the way, I can easily move them. The pieces leaning against the wall are usually ones I need handy for shipment for an upcoming exhibition.”

~ John McKaig, Williamsport, PA (site)

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Pajama Factory Holds Kids Day in Courtyard on July 14

WILLIAMSPORT –  If you are looking for something fun and free to do this summer with the kiddos, then join us at the Pajama Factory on Saturday, July 14, 2018 for Kids Day. It will be a day full of kids crafts and activities as part of our Courtyard Series – free community events being held in the courtyard on the corner of Rose Street and Park Avenue.

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Wolf Administration Celebrates Entrepreneurship, Tours Pajama Factory Makerspace Tours Pajama Factory Makerspace at 2018 PA Wilds Creative Entrepreneur’s Conference

Harrisburg, PA – Today, Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Executive Deputy Secretary Scott Dunkelberger joined Lycoming County Commissioner Rick Mirabito and officials from the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources for a tour of the Pajama Factory in Williamsport, Lycoming County, and to meet with one of the makerspace’s tenants Equinox, a manufacturer of outdoor recreational gear. The tour was part of the PA Wilds Center for Entrepreneurship’s Creative Entrepreneur’s Conference — a one-day educational conference for entrepreneurs and businesses of all sizes being held in conjunction with Pennsylvania Small Business Week.

“We are proud to help our entrepreneurs and small businesses turn their ideas, hopes, and dreams into reality, and we are committed to making it easier than ever for small businesses to start and grow in Pennsylvania,” Executive Deputy Secretary Dunkelberger said. “Small businesses like the companies at the Pajama Factory play a vital role in supporting our state economy and we’re proud to support their growth.”

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Penn College student transforms trash to fashion for show

A Pennsylvania College of Technology student’s ability to transform trash to fashion will be showcased for the public at 6 p.m. Nov. 30 in Penn College’s Thompson Professional Development Center. The “Trashion Fashion Show” is a free event devised by industrial design student Ashley E. Mahaffey, of Hughesville, as part of her senior capstone project. … Designer Valerie Beggs, director/owner of Make What You Wear at Williamsport’s Pajama Factory, has assisted Mahaffey throughout the project…

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Community Woodshop

Students with their completed projects

Williamsport Community WoodshopThe Pajama Factory encompasses many different creative facets from small business owners, to entrepreneurs, artists, musicians, coffee lovers, but tucked in the back part of the building past the courtyard is a special place for people to use their hands and learn a new skill.

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